June 27, 2012

Preparing for Company

As some of my readers may know, I am having a heart procedure on Monday. It's a very simple/routine procedure and oddly enough, I am not nervous at all! Now, if you ask me Sunday night, I might have a different answer, but right now, Thursday morning at 1:23am, I am excited!

With my husband's busy training schedule, he is not able to take any time off to help me recover when all this is over. Let me rephrase that, he IS able to take time off but, it will set him back in his training and that is the last thing I want!!! He has worked so hard to get to this point and I won't let some silly little procedure mess up his hard work! Fortunately, he will be by my side and in the waiting room on the big day and it will not mess up his training schedule, but beside him in the waiting room will be my Mom, Dad and little sister, and of course, our daughter.

My Mom and sister, Bradey, will arrive sometime Sunday afternoon. They are going to make the sixteen hour drive to Jacksonville, from central Arkansas. My Dad, is going to have to fly because of his job. I will insert here and say that I am blessed with a Dad who is an amazing Music Pastor. God has given him such an incredible gift and I can honestly say, I miss worshiping with him on Sunday mornings. His church has been doing mission projects all over their city this week and Sunday is their big wrap up day, so that is definitely a "Do not miss" day!!! By Sunday evening at 9:45, my family should be reunited and returning to my house from the airport! I feel like a kid getting ready for Christmas! I am so excited! The six of us haven't been together, under one roof, since December 30th, and in my opinion, that is entirely too long!

I am that girl that does way too much in preparation for company to arrive. I wash their sheets on the day of their arrival so that they are as fresh as can be, I make sure that they have a nice body wash and hair products in their bathroom, I fold their bed back (and occasionally place a mint or chocolate), I make sure that breakfast is already made for the next morning, the coffee pot is ready and coffee mugs are on the counter waiting for them. I'm starting to think I missed my calling in life as the owner of a Bed and Breakfast. Sometimes in preparation for guests, Clint tells me I overdo it. I guess he's right, I mean, they are coming in town for my heart surgery, they aren't coming for a spa vacation. I guess I just want them to feel like they are. Am I crazy? Please someone tell me that I am not the only one out there who gets a little too excited about guests staying with you and it is possible that you go a little too far above and beyond.

I know this for certain, on Sunday, I am making a nice loaf of banana bread, a loaf of gluten free sandwich bread and possibly some GF Oreos. I also have them a "goodie basket" made for the waiting room on Monday. Yes, that probably is a little too far, but my surgery could take anywhere from two-six hours, they may get bored and hungry! I just want the best for my guests. Even though they are staying in a 1300 square foot townhome in a semi-ghetto neighborhood, I want them to feel as if they are at a semi luxury resort with all the amenities!!!

OH! Fresh flowers too! ;)

Cake Pop's

I hope everyone is enjoying some of my recipes and tips!!! It makes me smile when I get an alert letting me know that someone has "pinned" my Silky Legs post! I know I do not keep up with this like I should. Things have been so crazy recently and they are only about to get crazier!

I have been battling a heart abnormality for four years and on Monday (July 2nd) I am finally having surgery to fix my "broken heart". It is a very simple procedure and I can not wait to feel normal again!! Well, as normal as I can be anyway!

I have an easy fun recipe for you to take into the holiday. It's a recipe for the easiest cake pops EVER! Some people think that you make cake pops from a round mold and bake it. Hate to burst your bubble, but there's no need to go buy a special pan, it's easier than that!!! All you need is a GF Chocolate Cake Mix, a regular size tub of frosting, and white chocolate almond bark.

 For this recipe, I use the Betty Crocker GF Devil's Food cake mix. Make the cake according to the directions on the box, except do not use water, use milk! (Always use milk over water!!!)

After the cake is baked, let it cool. Once it has cooled, break it up and run it through your food processor until it is a fine crumb. In a bowl or the baking pan (what I normally do) combine the tub of Chocolate Frosting (my choice) and the crumbed cake mix and then roll the messy mixture into small balls. If you have small dowel rods or popcicle sticks, put one in each cake ball and make it a cake "pop". I for one, never have either on hand, so I just make "Cake Balls".

Place in the refrigerator for about an hour and then dip into melted white chocolate almond bark, or just drizzle over the cake ball/pops.

We like to keep our "Cake Balls" in the refrigerator for the few hours that they last. My husband says that this specific combination almost tastes like an Oreo!!!! Which is actually perfect since my Twitter screen name is "i_miss_oreos".

I hope you enjoy these as much as we do!

HAPPY 4th of JULY just incase I do not get to post again!!!
Thank a military member today!!!

June 11, 2012

Gluten Free Cheese Crackers (CHEEZIT!!!)

This has officially become my "Most Wanted" recipe! As always, I will be upfront and confess that the original creation of this recipe is not my doing. I found the base of the recipe somewhere else and I have altered it to fit my gluten free lifestyle and the palate of my 14 month old little girl.

We have a hard time around here finding a really good "cracker" so I was excited to see a base recipe for this and use it to create something I have not been able to enjoy for almost four years, a Cheezit. They were so easy to make and so delicious! I'll just stop blabbing and post the recipe! I hope you enjoy as much as we did!

Gluten Free Cheese Crackers

**Hadley Version:
1c Flour
4T Cold UNsalted Butter
2 1/4c Cheese (I used Extra Sharp White Cheddar this time.)
3-4T Ice Water

-Note: Read recipe to see when to preheat your oven. Do not preheat at the beginning.

Pulse flour and butter in a food processor until combined. Slowly pulse in cheese (1/2c at a time) until all is combined. Pulse in 1T of Ice water (without the ice) at a time until dough is not as crumbly Remove from food processor and place in plastic wrap. Wrap up tightly and place in the refrigerator for about thirty minutes.

Once dough is out of the refrigerator, touch as little as possible. The warmth of your hands will start to melt the butter and we do not want that! Roll out dough onto a counter with a little bit of flour on it. Roll until dough is 1/8" thick. Cut the dough into small squares, about the size of Cheezits. I used a pizza cutter and it was fast and easy.

Place squares on a greased cookie sheet. To keep the cracker from puffing up in the middle, I placed a small hole in the center of each square. I broke of one of the teeth off of a plastic fork and used the broken end (bigger end) to poke the holes.

At this point, you can preheat your oven to 350 degrees. After you have placed all crackers on the baking sheet and poked holes in them, place the baking sheet in the refrigerator for ten minutes. This will cool down the butter again so that your crackers will stay square and not spread.

Bake at 350 for 13-18 minutes (depending on your oven) and enjoy!

**The non-Hadley version has a few extra ingredients.

1/2t of Pepper
1/8t of Onion Powder
The next batch, I will be substituting Pepper Jack cheese for the Cheddar.

Gluten Free Banana Bread

As I sit here typing this post, I am smelling the most amazing aroma coming from my kitchen! I have banana bread in the oven! It only has about 20 more minutes before it's final resting place in the stomachs of the three of us in this household.

Banana bread is by far one of our favorites! Here recently, I have been making it without pecans, which to me is just sinful, BUT, I do have an almost 14 month old who doesn't need those pieces of pecans just yet! Oh the sacrifices we make as mothers.

This recipe is straight from Pamela's BUT, I have made adjustments to make it better!!! Well, I guess that's my opinion. The only way you will know is if you make it both ways! (Don't waste your time, just make mine!!!!!!!)

I hope you enjoy!!

Banana Nut Bread

1 3/4c of Pamela's Pancake and Baking Mix
1/2c of Sugar or Honey (I use sugar)
3 Rotten Bananas (Anywhere from 2 1/4c-3c., we REALLY like banana)
4T of butter, melted
2 eggs, beaten
3/4c of Pecans, chopped (Optional)
1t Vanilla
1/8t Salt

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and grease a loaf pan. Combine the baking mix, sugar and salt. Then add in your bananas, eggs and vanilla. After all is combined, add in your pecans.

Place in your loaf pan and bake for 60 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. Baking for 60 minutes is a good time if you have 2-2 1/2c of banana, adjust for a wetter batter, AKA, more bananas!

Let cool as long as you can stand it and ENJOY! I always top with a little bit of margarine, I don't know why, I just feel like it's yummier on top than butter!!! T minus 10 minutes and counting until mine comes out of the oven!!!